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Teenager in Young Marines charged with abusing younger boy

A teenage boy has been charged with sexually abusing another boy while both were attending Young Marines activities in Anne Arundel County over the past two years, county police said Monday.

Police said the victim reported Sunday that he was sexually abused by the older boy, police said. According to police, the older boy was a squad leader in the Annapolis chapter of the Young Marines and oversaw younger children in the organization.

The abuse allegedly occurred at a Veterans of Foreign Wars post in Glen Burnie and a park in Pasadena, police said.

The older boy, who police said is 15, was charged as a juvenile with second-degree child abuse, third-degree sex offense and fourth-degree sex offense. Police did not release his name due to his age.

Mike Kessler, CEO of the national Young Marines, said the 15-year-old was "immediately removed from the active roles of the organization" once the allegations were made. Kessler said children in the Young Marines are always supervised, with at least one adult for every 10 children. He said Young Marines are given leadership assignments based on experience and ability, but children are never left under the supervision of other children.

The Young Marines organization was founded in 1959 and now has 300 units with 11,000 youth participants in America and overseas. Officials with the Annapolis chapter could not be reached Monday.

Police said anyone with information about the case, or other possible victims, may contact Detective Joshua Williams at 410-222-3484.

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